Burlap Wreath

I have seen this craft done on so many blogs and on pinterest, and decided I needed one for our house.  Little did I know.  This craft about did me in.  It looked so simple.  Looks can be deceiving!  I really want one done out of the natural colored burlap, and a red one.  But I just don't know if I can do it.  Maybe if I do them with the smaller wreath form.  For this one, I used the big wire wreath form (there's only 2 sizes at Michael's, so I'm not sure of the dimensions).  To start, I cut a zillion-baguillion (that is a real number, if you were wondering) strips of ivory burlap.  I cut them anywhere from 3/4" to 1 1/4" wide and about 11 or 12 inches long.  And then you tie.  And tie.  And tie.  Each row of wire gets about, oh, I don't know, 1,000 or so strips.  (I'm sure it's not that many, but it felt like it).  I double knotted mine so they wouldn't come undone.  You have to squeeze them in to make it really full!  I used almost a full 4 yards of burlap!  Can you believe that!  Thank goodness I found it for a little less than 3.00 a yard at Walmart.  Once you are done tying, make sure all the pieces are facing the front, and then I hot glued some strips of canvas on the back to help keep them secure.  I really love how pretty this turned out, and maybe if I give it another month or so, time will dull the bad memories, and I will try again.  But, I doubt it.

I am still accessorizing it for the season, and figuring out it's perfect spot in the house, but once it's all done and in place, I will post an update picture!


Milk Glass Look-Alike

For .10 a piece, these little glass bud vases were mine the second I laid eyes on them at a thrift store in Morehead City.  I came home, washed them up, and used the same technique I did in this post.  I used Apple Barrel acrylic paint in gloss, just plain ole white.  I'm tellin' ya..if you want to stock up your supply of different colors of acrylic paint.  Go to Walmart.  The small containers of Apple Barrel paint are .59!  Cheap way to build up your color choices!  Anyways, after letting them dry, this is what they look like.

About as close to milk glass as you can get without it actually being the real stuff!  Just pop some flowers in there, and you're set!  I put a sprig of fall foliage in one for the guest room, and I love it so much, that I think I need to go get another sprig to put in the other one!


Hubby of the Year!

J is always hubby of the year, because he is just so wonderful to me:)  But the main reason for this post is because I appreciate him and the fact that he always supports anything that I want to do.  All my hair-brained ideas, crafting, my photography, house renovations, and most recently, my desire to start building stuff!  Furniture, signs, crates, etc.  You've seen some of the posts already.  Small projects that are teaching me the basics.  J is such a good teacher too.  Very patient with me.  But, what really just made me super happy, was that he went out and bought me a bunch of the basic stuff I needed (partially so I wouldn't be stealing his, I think).  He got me a mini tool box like his, a Kreg Jig (if you don't know what this is, look it up..they are super awesome for butting planks of wood up next to each other for table tops, signs, whatever), a new drill set, and stocked my tool box with some basic tools.  He even bought me some of my favorite stain, which I discovered on the Shanty 2 Chic blog (one of my faves).  Some of the stuff in the pictures, I already had, but he filled in with some other stuff.  This to me says he believes in me, that he thinks I can do whatever I put my mind to.  And that.  It just means the world to me.  To have a husband who supports and believes in you.  It's just awesome!  Oh, not pictured, is a table saw..that was for both of us;o)


Plastic Pumpkin Upgrade

I had this group of pumpkins from several years ago (they still sell them at Walmart, I just saw them last week when they were putting out the first batch of fall stuff..yay!).  They were a little sad, the stems had come loose and I didn't like the colors of many of them.  So, I decided they needed to be white.  Off-white, really.  Beacuse I so love off-white.


I painted them with acrylic paint.  Apple Barrel Antique Parchment.  And then after securing the stems again with hot glue, I wrapped them with twine, also using hot glue to keep it in place.  It still needed something though.  So the tall pumpkin got a twine belt, and the little round pumpkin got outlined in twine.  Just right!  Don't do what I did, and just start painting them.  Prime them!  I'm telling you, I painted these suckers over and over because the orange just kept wanting to come back through.  Learned my lesson!

Then, after much consideration on where they should go, I decided on the bookshelf in the den.  It has lots of cubbies, and it's one of my favorite pieces of furniture because it just holds so much!  They went right in the center cubby.  I stacked some of them on a decorative box to give it more height and fill the space better.  I added a few leaves and a small vase with an autumn flower to finish filling the space.

I think it works nicely, especially right in the middle.  The top is decoarted for fall too.  Complete with my witchy hat and broom, a free autumn printable (found here), a couple of leaf tealight holders and a little glass pumpkin.  I'm thinking of making this to hold my broom, whaddya think!?


Flea Market Frame Into Christmas Art

A couple of weeks ago, I found this mirror at a flea market for 4.00, so it came home with me.  It was a little outta shape, but I saw big potential.  The mirror was just held on to the back with putty, so I cut it out with a razor, and cleaned the already chipping putty off the best I could.  The mirror was in really good shape, so I cleaned it up, and will re-frame it for the guest room, probably later this week.  The part of this frame that I really loved was that there was a thin fabric lining on the inner rim of the frame, and all the details/carvings on the main part of the frame.  Note: sorry about the pictures, they were taken at different times of the day, and some of them at night, so the lighting isn't the greatest in a few.
My before mirror:

I painted the whole frame (fabric strip and all) with a mix of two different acrylic reds, one coat.  Please do not judge my messy craft table, it just got a make-over yesterday.  The lack of organization was driving me batty!

The colors were Folk Art Lipstick Red and Apple Barrel Tuscan Red.  I just mixed them until I had the deep red I was looking for.  Lipstick Red was too orange-y, and the Tuscan Red had a bit too much brown.  So we mix!

Once the red was dry, I covered the frame (minus the fabric strip) with my favorite vintage white acrylic paint.  It took two coats.  I used Apple Barrel's Antique Parchment.  Then, I sanded!  I love the way the red comes through on the little details.  I sanded a little harder in some spots because I wanted some of the wood to show through too.
Then it was time for the art!  My frame holds a 12x16 picture.  So, I cut out a rectangle piece of burlap a bit bigger than that.  Then I searched and searched the internet for a reindeer silhouette.  I originally planned on it being of just the head, but then I found one to fit vertically of a whole reindeer body, and it was SO cute!  I just googled images and went through until I found one I liked.  I went back to find the source of mine, and it was actually a rubber stamp!  You can find it here.  I wasn't crazy about the antlers, though.  Not Christmas-y enough.  So, I printed it out, drew them the way I wanted them (I also made the nose and neck a little larger), and scanned them back into the computer.  Then I blew it up, and printed it out in 11x17 format using Microsoft Word.  Here's what I came up with for the antlers.  Feel free to use this if you want to do this project!
Once I had it printed (I used scrapbook paper so it would make a sturdier stencil), I cut the black part of it out, leaving the stencil.  Cutting those antlers out was NO FUN.  It was hard and slow because I was making teeny tiny snips with the scissors so I wouldn't cut too far and mess up the stencil.  Guess I should've thought about that when I decided I wanted pretty Christmas-swirl antlers.

After the stencil is positioned on your burlap, color it in with a black sharpie!  This was the easy part.  You could paint it too, but I like that I have more control with the sharpie, and it gives it the screen printed look.

For the backing, I cut out a 12x16 rectangle of cardboard (the brown of the cardboard is the perfect backing for the thin burlap, not allowing any show-through), making sure it would fit into the back of the frame.  And then, I wrapped my burlap around it, hot gluing it in place on the back.  Then I glued another same-size piece of cardboard to the back, hiding the burlap wrapping (it wasn't very pretty, but it had staying power).

Like this:


And, then, I wedged it in the frame (it was snug!), and used little finishing nails to nail sideways through the cardboard and into the frame to keep it in place.  The back is not so pretty with the old dried putty and cardboard, but nobody will see that part:)  The front is what matters...

And the front is beautiful, if I do say so myself!  I canNOT wait for Christmas to use this in my decorating.  I'm thinking it will have a perfect spot on the matel (matle?...I never know the right way to spell this).  I know it's a little early for Christmas crafts, but once this idea formed, I couldn't wait to see it come together!  Now I have to find the patience not to stick in with all my fall decor!

It has just the right amount of rustic, with a little whimsy.  I absolutely adore it!  If you decide to make one, I would love to see pictures!